Thursday, October 22, 2009

Lemon Bars

I'm not fully convinced of this recipe, but other people seemed to love it, so what do I know?  The bottom layer seemed a little hard and less than amazing to me.  Maybe a little more butter next time or a little less flour?  It just seemed to dry and dense.  I scaled it down to fit a smaller pan as 9x13 seemed like way too much lemony goodness for me!

Lemon Bars (from Smitten Kitchen) (from Barefoot Contessa Cookbook)


For the crust:
1/3 pound unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 1/3 cups flour
pinch of kosher salt

For the lemon layer:
4 extra-large eggs at room temperature
1 2/3 cups granulated sugar
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest (3 to 4 lemons)
2/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
2/3 cup flour

Confectioners’ sugar, for dusting

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F and grease a less than 9 by 13 by 2-inch baking sheet.
2. For the crust, cream the butter and sugar until light in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Combine the flour and salt and, with the mixer on low, add to the butter until just mixed. Dump the dough onto a well-floured board and gather into a ball. Flatten the dough with floured hands and press it into the greased baking sheet, building up a 1/2-inch edge on all sides. Chill.
3. Bake the crust for 15 to 20 minutes, until very lightly browned. Let cool on a wire rack. Leave the oven on.
4. For the lemon layer, whisk together the eggs, sugar, lemon zest, lemon juice, and flour. Pour over the crust and bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or about five minutes beyond the point where the filling is set. Let cool to room temperature.
5. Cut into triangles and dust with confectioners’ sugar.

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